Friday, March 18, 2016

Switzerland Wins Nations Team Event in St. Moritz

The Swiss success streak continued at the Audi FIS World Cup in St. Moritz (SUI) as the host nation claimed the crown at the Nation’s Team Event. The Swiss have now won three of the five races at this year’s season finals in addition to earning two second-place finishes..
The team of Wendy Holdener, Daniel Yule, Michelle Gisin and Reto Schmidiger topped Germany’s entry with Katrin Hirtl-Stanggassinger, Stefan Luitz, Lena Duerr and Dominik Stehle in a quirky Big Final. The Swiss had two skiers not finish their runs in the final, but thanks to the strong runs by Holdener and Schmidiger, Switzerland earned the win by a very slim 0.04 margin against their neighbors.
Holdener and Schmidiger were the heroes the entire day for the Swiss as they won all of their races. Switzerland beat Norway, Sweden and Germany en route to the team victory.
In the Small Final, Sweden grabbed the third spot on the podium after beating France in three of the four races.
The Nation’s Team Event is a fan and athlete favorite and the stands were packed today under perfect sunny skies in St. Moritz. In total, 11 teams entered the race after FIS expanded the field from the standard eight teams. Austria, Norway, USA and Italy all bowed out in the quarterfinals, leaving the final four teams to duke it out for the three podium spots.
The Nation’s Team Event is due to join the Olympic Program in 2018, making every one of the competitions between now and then an important test for the newest Olympic event.The compact knockout format race features two male and two female racers per team with the best combined time advancing to the next round.
Today after the race, in addition to the Nation’s Team Even awards, the crystal globes for the Alpine Combined title were also awarded. The Swiss had yet again another reason to celebrate as Wendy Holdener officially accepted her globe in front of the home crowd, while Alexis Pinturault (FRA) picked up his globe on the men’s side.

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